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View Full Version : Scsi, a network, and a server.



Mehmet
11-28-02, 09:44 PM
hey guys, wassizle?

I was thinking of setting up a file, print, and some other stuff server for my dads shop. He owns a printing company, so basically, hes got gigs upon gigs of client files (designs and so forth). Its sorta annoying backing up files all the time, so i was thinking of having a non-windows server running in his shop that no one would be able to use, physically, just be there for the files and stuff.

i was thinking of keeping hte files there permanently, where whenever my dad would want to access them, they would be there on the server, on not on the local machine. so that he doesnt have to worry about backing up.

now, i dont know if we really "need" SCSI drives in this machine, my guess was we did, until i saw the price for a decent sized scsi drive, (500+ bucks), which is a lot of money. Ive got another choice, which is getting a raid setup going with some 8meg cache drives. This a good idea? or should i save some money and go scsi all the way?

now, network speed is a factor too, weve got a 100 mbit switch running all the comps, and a linksys router giving net access to everything. (no comp is on the router, just the modem is connected to it, and uplink.) now, since the average transfer speed of our network is about 10 megs per second, wouldnt that just not utilitize the drives very well? I would want to get out the most out of the drives in there, so a performance boost would occur too. theres also another problem with drives. whatever the partition may be formatted in (it will be NON windows, remember that), it will be having files from Fat32, and HFS+ (mac file system), on it, and I need to be able to backup both types of files with having the OS screw up some files (like windows does with its need to put the extension on the file.). also, when weve got our mac to pc network right now, the mac access time is SLOOOOWW, the mac will access the pcs really fast, but the pcs will take at least 3 minutes before you can access the directory you want.. crap, i forgot my question about this, but i think our problems would be solved because all the files are on the server right? oh right, heres the question, i need the Os to be fast with both OS's (windows and Mac OS.)

alright, now, heres a question for the OS that i am "dreaming" about...

WHAT OS should it be? a flavor of *nix probably, linux would be ideal, i guess. might have an FTP running too...

another factor that i forgot to talk about, i want to learn the most i can from this project, i want to be able to get really comfortable with whatever OS i will be using and so forth..

Ahh, all these questions... heres a small question for ya guys, what exactly is RAID 5? ( i know about raid 0, 1, and 0+1, but im not sure about 5).


thanks for reading through this guys..

Faust
11-28-02, 10:18 PM
first of all, what's your total budget?


if it were me, i would go with a NAS box. operating systems differ between mfgrs, but many have a proprietary O/S (modified *nix in some cases) geared solely for a Network Attached Storage environment, so you wouldn;t need to learn a new O/S. just learn to configure the box through their GUI.

your budget would mean whether or not this is viable for your scenario.

Faust
11-28-02, 10:23 PM
BTW, here's a link to some of the nicer NAS boxes out there. there are cheaper ones out there.


http://www.aberdeeninc.com/abcatg/popnetserver.htm

Faust
11-28-02, 10:31 PM
what exactly is RAID 5? ( i know about raid 0, 1, and 0+1, but im not sure about 5).


RAID 5 ("parity striping") is a way to gain the benefits of striping (RAID 0) while still maintaining a high degree of fault tolerance. with RAID 5, there are no mirrored drives. the array uses parity blocks across all the drives in the array to store enough data to totally reconstruct a failed drive within the array. if a drive fails, you take out the bad drive, pop in a new one, and reconstrust the array through the controller. RAID 5 commonly runs off 3 drives, wheras RAID 0+1 would require at least 4.

Mehmet
11-29-02, 03:00 AM
Originally posted by Faust
RAID 5 ("parity striping") is a way to gain the benefits of striping (RAID 0) while still maintaining a high degree of fault tolerance. with RAID 5, there are no mirrored drives. the array uses parity blocks across all the drives in the array to store enough data to totally reconstruct a failed drive within the array. if a drive fails, you take out the bad drive, pop in a new one, and reconstrust the array through the controller. RAID 5 commonly runs off 3 drives, wheras RAID 0+1 would require at least 4.

yeah, just figured that out :)

the budget is NOT set yet faust, since we will not be getting it anytime soon, but are planning things... but like i looked through newegg for some stuff, and for me to setup a raid 5 with western digi 120 gig 8 meg cache, a case, and some ram, it would cost about 700 or so bucks.. which is alright actually, ok i guess. The rest of the stuff i got laying around.. (abit kt7a, YOUR thunderbird :) and some other stuff).

thanks scott.

Mehmet
11-29-02, 03:03 AM
Originally posted by Faust
BTW, here's a link to some of the nicer NAS boxes out there. there are cheaper ones out there.


http://www.aberdeeninc.com/abcatg/popnetserver.htm

these are pretty expensive though, 900 bucks for a 3x40 gig storage.. and cant really hook up printers and what not to it.. pretty cool though :)

YeOldeStonecat
11-29-02, 07:22 AM
If all he needs are file and print, even Linksys makes a great little NAS box...I've setup a few, print server too! 600 bucks. But there are many out there that are cross platform (both Windows and MAC).

Access time between the two OS's....there's a problem if you're getting that issue, and NT server, with CrAppleTalk, runs great, both OS's access it fine.

Now, here's your issues...you mention "backing up is a pain"...well, it's a business, backing up data that a business runs on is one of your top priorities. If the data gets lost, well, that can be a lethal blow to a business. Backup must be implemented.

IDE RAID I wouldn't bother with, IDE doesn't do well with concurrent hits like SCSI, which is why SCSI dominates the server market. If you're on a budget, just stick with straight up IDE, with the WD SE's. They'll be spitting out data faster than your network can transfer anyways.

Make sure you have a 10/100 switched network, with good quality switches, not your little 49 dollar ones. BTW, what type of files? How large? Giga is not that much expensive anymore.

Mehmet
11-29-02, 12:31 PM
Originally posted by YeOldeStonecat
If all he needs are file and print, even Linksys makes a great little NAS box...I've setup a few, print server too! 600 bucks. But there are many out there that are cross platform (both Windows and MAC).

Access time between the two OS's....there's a problem if you're getting that issue, and NT server, with CrAppleTalk, runs great, both OS's access it fine.

Now, here's your issues...you mention "backing up is a pain"...well, it's a business, backing up data that a business runs on is one of your top priorities. If the data gets lost, well, that can be a lethal blow to a business. Backup must be implemented.

IDE RAID I wouldn't bother with, IDE doesn't do well with concurrent hits like SCSI, which is why SCSI dominates the server market. If you're on a budget, just stick with straight up IDE, with the WD SE's. They'll be spitting out data faster than your network can transfer anyways.

Make sure you have a 10/100 switched network, with good quality switches, not your little 49 dollar ones. BTW, what type of files? How large? Giga is not that much expensive anymore.

hrm, i dunno about running NT server on this machine though.. i just might go for nas box and just forget about print sharing and crap, but your saying that nas boxes ARENT cross platform?

of course, backup is implemented, just that its a huge pain with the system weve got now, (hdd on another machine, and people use that one too ack..).. sometimes i even have to burn cd's, 20 fricking cds, woop de doo.

yeah, i just might do too, just straight IDE, but im not sure.. what other option would be ideal for us? using ide, but with raid or something?

oh yeah, our switch is quality alright, 20 something port switch, its a linksys that we got from compUSA, but not like the cheap kind, like the rack mount kind.

the files range a lot, sometimes its 2 megs, sometimes its 500 megs..

thanks YOSC!

YeOldeStonecat
11-29-02, 03:14 PM
Well, for budget purposes, I guess something like a SnapServer.

http://www.snapappliance.com/

Bummer you can't use the Linksys NAS...because it's pretty cool. Print server, FTP server, DHCP server, and you can retrieve your files remotely through a web interface...even print from remote via the web interface. As far as I know, it's not cross platform. But many NAS units are, such as the Snap linked above.

Maybe in another year replace that Linksys switch with something with more nut.

Mehmet
11-29-02, 07:20 PM
Originally posted by YeOldeStonecat
Well, for budget purposes, I guess something like a SnapServer.

http://www.snapappliance.com/

Bummer you can't use the Linksys NAS...because it's pretty cool. Print server, FTP server, DHCP server, and you can retrieve your files remotely through a web interface...even print from remote via the web interface. As far as I know, it's not cross platform. But many NAS units are, such as the Snap linked above.

Maybe in another year replace that Linksys switch with something with more nut.

that snap server is pretty damn cool! but, a bit expensive ( 160 gigs is about 1100 bucks off of pricegrabber), but the 80 gig is exactly what our price range is...

now, what kinda harddrives are these? ide? SCSI? because replacing the harddrive might just solve all our solutions eh?

YeOldeStonecat
11-29-02, 07:29 PM
Originally posted by vegeto

now, what kinda harddrives are these? ide? SCSI? because replacing the harddrive might just solve all our solutions eh?

Lots of good specs to read in there....you'll find where it mentioned IDE.

You think SCSI drives to 160 gigs would be only 1100 bucks?

Mehmet
11-29-02, 07:49 PM
Originally posted by YeOldeStonecat
Lots of good specs to read in there....you'll find where it mentioned IDE.

You think SCSI drives to 160 gigs would be only 1100 bucks?

damn it, stupid me.. lol..

it says its running raid 1,0 ( im guessing its one or the other).. so its gotta have 2 hdds in there.... right?

Mehmet
11-29-02, 07:56 PM
why is it that i cant find where the hell it says that its IDE.. went through almost all the specs of the 1100...

twwabw
11-30-02, 06:34 AM
The Snap servers are indeed cross-platform, and will do Windows and "Crapple-Talk" ( I liked that one YOSC.... I usually call it Apple-Squawk" ). Have a client who just put one in- publishing Company. It uses a Linux back-end, with a Web interface. Nice unit.

But, as you stated, and I recall from an earlier post, your network has a speed issue. Something is very wrong if clients only transfer at 10baseT speeds on a Base100 network. A Snap server; file server; or anything else will not overcome that problem.

YARDofSTUF
11-30-02, 07:00 AM
even on its own system ur gonna need a backup, client files arent something u wanna lose.

YeOldeStonecat
11-30-02, 07:32 AM
Originally posted by vegeto
damn it, stupid me.. lol..

it says its running raid 1,0 ( im guessing its one or the other).. so its gotta have 2 hdds in there.... right?

You can configure them in various ways. Some, like the Linksys, you can add drives down the road, replace them, upgrade them, etc...they are just run of the mill IDE drives.

As for the details...on the left side of the website, hit up on the "Technical Reference" link....TONS of goodies in there.

LAN transfer speeds.....is the cabling good? Maybe want to have that tested and verified by a professional. Next....think about upgrading that Linksys hub/switch, they make decent stuff for entry level setups, but anything demanding....I'd never use their equipment. Also, only using TCP/IP, right? No other protocols loaded...hopefully.

Mehmet
11-30-02, 04:14 PM
twwabw, we sorta fixed that problem right now, i gotta fully test it out though.. know of any good proggys to REALLY test out your network speed? sandra reports it as 100 base.. also, i know that this snap server wont overcome our speed problem, but it sure will help me in terms of backing up..

The cableing is all fine, we actually rewired everything a month or two ago.. We USED to have a netgear hub running all this, but then we were like screw this, and got a switch instead.

no other protocols, just TCP/IP and appletalk, the only two we use..

YoS, yeah, i know we need to have another backup, maybe a tape drive when weve got the funds. heres a question about raid 1.... if i were to take out one HDD of the array, and put it in a non raid system, would all the files be there? or not?

the snap servers are really grabbing my attention right now.. some cool ass shizzi.